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Kinship by Covenant: A Canonical Approach to the Fulfillment of God's Saving Promises (The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library) First Edition Edition

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ISBN-13: 978-0300140972
ISBN-10: 0300140975
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Editorial Reviews


A magisterial biblical theology.... A deep, detailed and consistent theological vision... Hahn's skill in assembling disparate canonical and historical-critical elements... alone warrants acclamation.  --A.K.M. Adam (Catholic Biblical Quarterly)

The breadth and depth of this book are extraordinary. Hahn has a remarkable ability to integrate exegetical insights into an overarching theological synthesis. It is difficult to overestimate its explanatory power.
--Brant Pitre (Nova et Vetera)

This masterly inductive exploration of the covenant offers a sure-footed analysis of Scripture. Its rigor is matched by a willingness to take the theological exegesis of the NT seriously.  --Kent E. Brower, Journal for the Study of the New Testament

A robust constructive proposal for understanding the fundamental structure of Scripture.... Hahn has done his homework....  This book should be read by biblical scholars and theologians alike. --Leroy Huizenga, Bullein for Biblical Research

Professor Hahn pays close attention to critical scholarship and sees historical criticism and canonical criticism as complementary..... A wide-ranging and stimulating work. --John Goldingay, Journal of Theological Studies

"Both well-written and exhaustive, this impressive work will fascinate readers with New Testament truths about God's unyielding covenant with his chosen, fallible people."—David Noel Freedman
(David Noel Freedman)

"Scott Hahn opens new vistas, chases down old haunts, and leads us to a fuller, deeper, and more penetrating understanding of covenant. Until we get 'covenant' right, we simply don't understand the Bible. When I think of the word 'covenant,' I think of Kinship by Covenant. When I have any questions about 'covenant,' this is the first book I will turn to for ever and a day."—Scot McKnight, North Park University
(Scot McKnight)

“At last Scott Hahn’s Kinship by Covenant is published! Maintaining a masterful command of the data on biblical and ancient near eastern covenants, the work exposes how, for over a century, biblical scholarship lost sight of the covenant as a kinship-forging ritual. Richly documented, theologically profound, the book will prove an invaluable resource in Old and New Testament study.”— Gregory Yuri Glazov, Seton Hall University, Immaculate Conception Seminary
(Gregory Glazov)

"Kinship by Covenant is thoroughly researched and lucidly argued. Those with a serious interest in a biblical theology of covenants will not want to miss Hahn's contribution."—Brandon D. Crowe, Westminster Theological Journal
(Brandon D. Crowe Westminster Theological Journal)

"Learned and well-written."—Jon D. Levenson, Journal of Religion
(Jon D. Levenson Journal of Religion)

From the Back Cover

"This book is the fruit of an immense amount of research in the contemporary study of the divine covenants in Scripture.  No one who takes up the challenge of reading it, whether scholar or not, will come away without being more astute in matters human and divine.  The thesis of the book is masterly in its basic insight: life lived under the biblical covenant cannot be separated from life lived in relationships shaped by family ties and terms.  It is the family which is central to the biblical view of life for the simple reason that the family is central to life itself."
James Swetnam, S.J. - Pontifical Biblical Institute (Rome) 

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Product Details

  • Series: The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library
  • Hardcover: 589 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; First Edition edition (June 16, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300140975
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300140972
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #569,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dr. Scott Hahn is the author (or editor) of over forty books, including several recent titles (Joy to the World, Evangelizing Catholics, Angels and Saints, and Consuming the Word), along with best-selling titles like Rome Sweet Home, The Lamb's Supper, Hail Holy Queen, A Father Who Keeps His Promises, Lord Have Mercy, First Comes Love, Swear to God, Understanding Our Father, Scripture Matters, Spirit and Life, Understanding the Scriptures, Catholic Bible Dictionary, Many Are Called, Signs of Life, Reasons to Believe, Answering the New Atheism, Ordinary Work Extraordinary Grace, and Living the Mysteries. His academic publications include Kinship by Covenant: A Canonical Approach to the Fulfillment of God's Saving Promises (Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library), The Kingdom of God as Liturgical Empire: A Theological Commentary on 1-2 Chronicles, Covenant and Communion: The Biblical Theology of Pope Benedict XVI, Letter and Spirit: From Written Text to Living Word in the Liturgy, and Politicizing the Bible: The Roots of Historical Criticism and the Secularization of Scripture (1300-1700). He is the editor of the academic periodical, Letter & Spirit: A Journal of Catholic Biblical Theology, and co-editor of the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible.

An exceptionally popular speaker and teacher, Dr. Scott Hahn has delivered thousands of popular talks and academic lectures, nationally and internationally, on a wide range of topics related to Scripture, Theology and the Catholic faith. Hundreds of these presentations have been recorded and distributed by Lighthouse Catholic Media. He has appeared on hundreds of television programs on the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), where he has also been the regular host and presenter on several popular 13-week series (including Our Fathers Plan, The Lamb's Super, Genesis to Jesus, Consuming the Word).

Founder and President of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology ( / ), Dr. Hahn holds the Fr. Michael Scanlan, TOR Chair of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he's taught since 1990. He also holds the William and Lois McEssy Distinguished Visiting Professor of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Mundelein Seminary in Chicago. In 2005, he was awarded the Pope Benedict XVI Chair of Biblical Theology and Liturgical Proclamation at St. Vincent Seminary (Latrobe PA), which he held through 2011. He also held the Cardinal Laghi Chair of Catholic Theology from 2002-2004 at the Pontifical Seminary Josephinum (Columbus OH).

Scott graduated from Grove City College in 1979 with his BA in Theology, Philosophy and Economics (magna cum laude). He graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 1982 with his M.Div (summa cum laude). Scott received his Ph.D. in Theology from Marquette University in 1995 (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa). He was ordained in 1982 at Trinity Presbyterian Church (Fairfax VA). He entered the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil, 1986.

Dr. Scott Hahn was born in 1957, and has been married to Kimberly since 1979. They live in Steubenville Ohio and have six children and twelve grandchildren.

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47 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Jeri VINE VOICE on July 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Scott's book began as his doctoral thesis. Over a decade later, he has now written this exhaustive and superb book on the meaning of covenant.

Oddly, there has been a "dearth of scholarship...on...covenant research in the Old Testament" (p 17) connected to the research on the historical Jesus. Yet covenant is one of the overarching themes of the bible. "The study of God's covenant in history will consist largely of a series of thematic connections and conceptual links, all of which are related to kinship" (p 21).

There are three kinds of covenant in the bible--kinship, treaty, and grant. Throughout the bible, familial terminology like father, husband, and son are used in connection to covenant.

Scott argues that covenant was a sacred oath which could never be shattered. The penalty for breaking covenant was death (sin). Israel's "identity and mission can be defined in terms of divine sonship (p 91), but Israel was only to be the 'firstborn' son, indicating there would be more.

Indeed, each covenant in Israel's history anticipates and finds fulfillment in the subsequent covenant. As, for example, Abraham's willingness to sacrifice Isaac foreshadows God's willingness to sacrifice his own son. Or as Melchizedek's bringing bread and wine foreshadows Jesus' bread and wine later.

The golden calf episode, in which Israel rejects God and worships an idol instead, is the pivotal event, the 'hinge' as Scott explains, (p 151) which jeopardizes their covenant. It ends the covenant of perpetual priesthood and begins the Levitical covenant which lasts until 70 AD (p159-66).
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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Taylor Marshall on September 16, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Dr. Scott Hahn's Kinship by Covenant is a revised and updated version of his 1995 doctoral dissertation Kinship by Covenant: A Biblical Theological Study of the Covenant Types and Texts in the Old and New Testaments published for the Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library.

The great biblical scholar, David Noel Freedman (d. 2008), recognized that Scott Hahn's Kinship by Covenant "adapts Dual Covenant Hypothesis: namely, the apparent contradiction between God's covenant with Abraham and the covenant with Moses on Sinai" (book's preface). Hahn reassesses how the New Covenant authors contrast the various covenants established at Moriah (Abraham and Isaac), Sinai (Law), Moab (Deuteronomy), and Zion/Moriah (New Covenant). Accordingly, the New Covenant does not "supercede" the Mosaic Law--rather the New Covenant, in a sense, "precedes" the Mosaic Covenant by a return to and expansion of the covenant made with Abraham.

Hahn shows appreciation for E.P. Sanders' scholarship regarding covenantal nomism, but he also supplies a subtle criticism of Sanders for not maintaining the "tensions and discontinuity" between Scripture's covenantal relationships (pp. 239-41). Kinship by Covenant also complements the work of N.T. Wright by showing how the Deuteronomic curses relate to the magnanimous conditions of the New Covenant (p. 252 ff).

Hahn expands the work of covenantal scholars Meredith Kline (Reformed) and D.J. McCarthy (Catholic), by demonstrating that the divine economy often begins with a Kinship Covenant (divine promises), moves to a Treaty Covenant (divine law), and then ends in a Grant Covenant (divine oath). This pattern can be mapped as "Adam as created" > "Adam being tested (and failing)" > "Adam receiving promise of redemption" (Gen 3:15).
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Thomas B. Clarke on February 1, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this book because I was convinced that the Mosaic Covenant should be divided into two covenants: one at Sinai and the other at Moab. Kinship by Covenant added phenomenal value and research to take me from this two covenant thinking to a much more complete understanding of covenants as a whole, both from the Old and New Testament perspective. Hahn is one of the few Biblical thinkers that recognize the multiple covenant approach that Moses was given. If pursued correctly, it should take our modern Church into a new level of understanding.

That is not to say that I always agreed with Hahn; there were some areas where I think he might have approached the text differently. In my opinion, good scholarly study of the Bible should challenge your thinking so that you can examine the Scriptures for yourself. I consistently asked myself, "So why was Leviticus written?" or "What was really happening at Sinai?" or "Why did Moses change his approach at Moab?" It is the pursuit of these and many other questions that Hahn provided a great deal of insight, to which I contribute my own theological understanding. That is the sign of excellent Biblical scholarship.

As a result of this book, I have begun my own independent study of the Pentateuch. I want to see the whole picture for myself, without the lens of Dr. Hahn. I have this book to credit for leading me to begin that in-depth analysis.

Tom Clarke, author of Joshua's Spiritual Warfare: Understanding the Chiasms of Joshua
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